A dramatic rise in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations across the U.S. is sending cities and states back into lockdown.
As Chicago logs around 1,900 new coronavirus cases every day, Mayor Lori Lightfoot on Thursday announced another round of protective measures meant to curb the spread. Lightfoot asked residents only to leave the house for work, school, and essential needs, and to avoid even gathering with trusted friends outside of one's household. Illinois as a whole is also asking residents to stay home except for essential activities.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) enacted similar measures Wednesday, though he outright barred gatherings of 10 or more people at private residences. Bars, restaurants, and gyms will also have to close at 10 p.m., while schools in New York City are reportedly on the verge of shutting down even as those businesses remain open.
States run by Republican governors are also taking measures to slow the spread that's particularly spiking across the Midwest. Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb (R) backtracked from the state's Stage 5 reopening phase to limit social gatherings and school events, and distributed funds to local officials to help them crack down on mask and social distancing requirements. Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine (R) updated his mask mandate to hold businesses responsible if they allow employees or customers not to wear masks. He is threatening further shutdowns if things don't improve.
The U.S. reported a record 145,835 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday, as well as a record 64,000 coronavirus hospitalizations. Public health experts nationwide are advising against gathering with family during the upcoming holiday season.
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